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Serge Ibaka

Congo-born Serge Ibaka became a Spanish citizen in July 2011 - and a year later was picking up a silver medal as part of his adopted country's Olympic Basketball team.

His first title had come at the 2011 EuroBasket, where Spain beat France in the final 98-85.

The power forward helped Spain defeat France again in the quarter-finals of the London 2012 Olympic Games, before they were edged out 107-100 by the United States in the gold medal match.

Ibaka had started his professional career in France, before moving to Spain with CB L’Hospitalet in 2007.

He was selected 24th overall pick in the 2008 NBA Draft by the Seattle SuperSonics, who later become the Oklahoma City Thunder, and by 2012 he was in the NBA Finals, on the losing side against the Miami Heat. In 2016, he was traded to the Orlando Magic, then made the switch to Toronto Raptors in February 2017.

Ibaka was the third youngest of 18 children growing up in the war-torn Congo - his parents were both basketball players.

But his mother died when he was eight, and his father was held as a political prisoner attempting to move his family away from the war.

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Flag and Family

Profiles of what it means to be a first-generation athlete in Europe as they try to balance national and personal identities.

Best of London 2012

From a spectacular Royal entrance at the Opening Ceremony to Usain Bolt's world record and Mo Farah's double, relive the best of London 2012.
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What's inside...
From a spectacular Royal entrance at the Opening Ceremony to Usain Bolt's world record and Mo Farah's double, relive the best of London 2012.
View Feature

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